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Katoa, CHT and Aitken in mix to take on Sea Eagles

Young second rower Eliesa Katoa, halfback Chanel Harris-Tavita and centre Euan Aitken have all been included in the Vodafone Warriors’ 21-man squad for Sunday’s ninth-round NRL encounter with Manly-Warringah at Lottoland in Sydney (2.00pm kick-off local time; 4.00pm NZT).

The 21-year-old Katoa comes straight back into the starting line-up replacing powerhouse forward Ben Murdoch-Masila, who has been ruled out following a head knock late in the second half of Sunday’s 24-20 win over North Queensland.

Katoa's last NRL appearance was coincidentally against Manly when the Vodafone Warriors fell to a 12-13 fifth-round loss at Central Coast Stadium.

He had an impressive outing for feeder club Redcliffe in the Intrust Super Cup the following week only to pick up a toe injury which has had him side-lined the last two weeks.

Harris-Tavita has been listed in jersey #20 as he eyes a return after being side-lined for the last six rounds following surgery for a stress fracture in his left foot picked up in the 16-20 round two loss to Newcastle.

New signing Aitken has appeared only in the season-opening 19-6 win over Gold Coast when he suffered an ankle injury which required surgery. He has been listed in jersey #22.

Team Lists

Backs

  • Fullback for Sea Eagles is number 1 Tom Trbojevic
    Fullback for Warriors is number 1 Roger Tuivasa-Sheck
  • Winger for Sea Eagles is number 2 Jason Saab
    Winger for Warriors is number 2 Edward Kosi
  • Centre for Sea Eagles is number 3 Brad Parker
    Centre for Warriors is number 3 Adam Pompey
  • Centre for Sea Eagles is number 4 Morgan Harper
    Centre for Warriors is number 4 Rocco Berry
  • Winger for Sea Eagles is number 5 Reuben Garrick
    Winger for Warriors is number 5 Ken Maumalo
  • Five-Eighth for Sea Eagles is number 6 Kieran Foran
    Five-Eighth for Warriors is number 20 Chanel Harris-Tavita
  • Halfback for Sea Eagles is number 7 Daly Cherry-Evans
    Halfback for Warriors is number 7 Kodi Nikorima

Forwards

  • Prop for Sea Eagles is number 8 Taniela Paseka
    Prop for Warriors is number 8 Jamayne Taunoa-Brown
  • Hooker for Sea Eagles is number 9 Lachlan Croker
    Hooker for Warriors is number 9 Wayde Egan
  • Prop for Sea Eagles is number 10 Sean Keppie
    Prop for Warriors is number 10 Kane Evans
  • 2nd Row for Sea Eagles is number 11 Haumole Olakau'atu
    2nd Row for Warriors is number 11 Josh Curran
  • 2nd Row for Sea Eagles is number 12 Josh Schuster
    2nd Row for Warriors is number 17 Bayley Sironen
  • Lock for Sea Eagles is number 13 Jake Trbojevic
    Lock for Warriors is number 13 Tohu Harris

Interchange

  • Interchange for Sea Eagles is number 14 Cade Cust
    Interchange for Warriors is number 6 Reece Walsh
  • Interchange for Sea Eagles is number 15 Moses Suli
    Interchange for Warriors is number 14 Jazz Tevaga
  • Interchange for Sea Eagles is number 16 Zac Saddler
    Interchange for Warriors is number 15 Leeson Ah Mau
  • Interchange for Sea Eagles is number 17 Toafofoa Sipley
    Interchange for Warriors is number 16 Bunty Afoa

Reserves

  • Reserve for Sea Eagles is number 18 Ben Trbojevic
    Reserve for Warriors is number 18 Jack Murchie

Match Officials

  • Referee: Peter Gough
  • Touch Judge: Darian Furner
  • Touch Judge: Todd Smith
  • Senior Review Official: Ashley Klein

Last updated:

Other than Katoa coming in for Murdoch-Masila, the starting side and nominated bench is unchanged from the victory over the Cowboys.

It again sees two-game centre Rocco Berry and last week’s debutant winger Edward Kosi named on the right edge while the exciting rookie Reece Walsh is selected in the halves with the experienced Kodi Nikorima.

After eight rounds – a third of the season – the Vodafone Warriors sit seventh on the NRL ladder with a four win-four loss record.

Hit with a heavy injury toll and suspensions, head coach Nathan Brown has already been forced to use 28 players with Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, Ken Maumalo, Kodi Nikorima, Wayde Egan, Jazz Tevaga and Leeson Ah Mau the only ones set to make their ninth straight appearance this week.

Tuivasa-Sheck goes into the return clash against Manly in a three-way share of the lead on the Dally M points table after collecting three points against the Cowboys when he made 225 metres (including 62 post contact metres) from 28 runs with eight tackle breaks, a line break, a try assist and three off loads.

He’s first among all players for most runs (196), second for most metres (1965), third for most post contact metres (571) and fourth for most tackle breaks (44).

VODAFONE WARRIORS v MANLY WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES

2.00pm, Sunday, May 9, 2021

Lottoland, Sydney

 

VODAFONE WARRIORS

1 ROGER TUIVASA-SHECK (c)

2 EDWARD KOSI

3 ADAM POMPEY

4 ROCCO BERRY

5 KEN MAUMALO

6 REECE WALSH

7 KODI NIKORIMA

8 JAMAYNE TAUNOA-BROWN

9 WAYDE EGAN

10 KANE EVANS

11 JOSH CURRAN

12 ELIESA KATOA

13 TOHU HARRIS

Interchange:

14 JAZZ TEVAGA

15 LEESON AH MAU

16 BUNTY AFOA

17 BAYLEY SIRONEN

18 JACK MURCHIE

20 CHANEL HARRIS-TAVITA                                                                   

21 TOM ALE

22 EUAN AITKEN

HEAD COACH | NATHAN BROWN